Restoration plans for 2016
A RECORD 35 weeks of work at 16 different worksites on 14 canals from Stover in the south-west to Pocklington in North Yorkshire feature in Waterway Recovery Group’s 2016 programme of Canal Camps – week-long working holidays supporting local canal groups’ restoration projects across the country.
Getting a big push from WRG’s volunteers this year are the Cotswold Canals, with no fewer than ten weeks of work spread along the route, and the Grantham where the whole of July will be spent rebuilding Lock 15 at Woolsthope. But it isn’t just about the big wellestablished projects: there will be camps working on up-and-coming schemes like the Uttoxeter and the Council. There were also categories for Canal Wildlife and Canal Activities, and all the winning entries can be seen at devon.gov.uk/gwcphotos. Shrewsbury & Newport, as well as returning to sites that haven’t seen WRG for a while such as the Lapal Canal.
The volunteers’ work will include everything from clearing mud and vegetation from derelict canal beds to rebuilding locks and bridges, and from traditional techniques involving willow hurdles and stonemasonry to modern concrete construction. New volunteers of all ages over 18 are welcome on WRG camps, and no previous experience is necessary. See wrg.org.uk.
Luke will begin his Laureateship by foot, writing about his canalside journeys as he goes, in a series of new poems. The poems, and other surreal observations, will be published from January on the project blog waterlines.org.uk and you can follow his adventure via Twitter@canalpoetry.
Richard Parry, Canal & River Trust chief executive, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Luke Kennard as the new Canal Laureate. Luke, as a ‘curious pedestrian’, will provide a new perspective, as he explores and learns about our historic canals and rivers afresh, and we’re excited to see the direction he takes.”